Hello DoBlu readers!
As you likely know, DoBlu has crowdfunded before, but this year, we’re trying something different. Welcome to DoBlu’s Patreon which exists as a place to contribute to the site on a monthly basis, the same as with Netflix or Hulu – only you set the price.
Wait, I have to pay for DoBlu?
No, not at all. DoBlu has always been free. I’ve never put any content behind a paywall nor do I have any plans to. However, the media market is changing… rapidly.
Everything really. People watch movies on iPads. They stream them on Netflix. They use VOD services. In many instances, Blu-ray is the last choice despite the difference in quality. Obviously, this means the interest in Blu-ray reviews (already a niche market before the advent of streaming) has become increasingly thin. With declining mainstream engagement in the format, there is declining need for specialty reviews. Look at this snapshot from Google Trends which tracks how often people search for certain phrases. “Blu-ray reviews” is at the lowest point since the inception of the format.
As you’ve noticed, we have begun including theatrical/VOD reviews to stay ahead and keep a balance. We want to do Blu-ray reviews. You want Blu-ray reviews. But financially, it makes little sense to be so restrictive in terms of content. The time spent crafting these reviews is mammoth – it’s a part time (plus!) job and ads do not pay for a part time position.
So that’s why you’re here?
Bingo. In order to continue writing for such a niche market, especially one with relatively high expenses (Blu-ray rentals alone account for $500-$700 per year, more necessary now than ever with studios becoming increasingly strict with review product), we need some continuing financial support. That’s the unfortunate reality of most content creation on the ‘net as ad markets breakdown, AdBlock becomes more prevalent, and in this case, as traffic dwindles due to lessening interest. Hence why Patreon was created in the first place.
If no one contributes, will DoBlu shutdown?
Not necessarily, but without some funding, our content will be lessened. As of now, we feature five reviews per week. Keeping up that pace is no longer feasible without financial backing.
If I contribute, who gets paid? Where does the money go?
It’s a chain effect.
– Shipping and server costs: Discs sent to Chris for review run around $20 a month in shipping. Servers? Twice that.
– Rentals/purchases: With studios increasingly on lockdown with regards to review discs, we need to rent/buy more. This can add up to $700 a year as stated above.
– Equipment: The BD-ROM drives used for our screen shots burn out from overuse in about four to five months on average. They can be $70 or more. This also includes any upkeep or repairs to home theater equipment needed for accurate reviews.
– Ourselves: Me and Chris can make this project personally profitable. As of now, the costs suck up nearly all of the funds made from Amazon referrals or ads, those traditional revenue streams which have slowly evaporated. A little kickback our way means we can spend more time focusing on DoBlu.
And what do I get?
What do you want? Do you want more specialty reviews? Catalog titles? Indie movies? You tell us! With money coming in, we have more opportunity to buy more discs. Maybe something else entirely? Just let us know. As of now, you can gain access to a catalog of 21,000 uncompressed screen shots, early access to screens, a Blu-ray every month delivered to your door, or even be involved directly with how the site functions, all dependent on how much you can donate.
Is there a minimum?
You can contribute as little as $1 a month if you so desire. However, the more you give, the more rewards you get and the better content we can produce. Visit the Patreon page to see the reward tiers and if you have suggestions for others, let us know!
We appreciate your time and please leave any comments below if you have any questions!